The draft National Digital Policy proposes a target of 70% of internet users by 2025, an undeniably ambitious target. The target – pulled out of thin air as though it may seem – is actually based on a time series forecast using ITU statistics from 2000-2017. The forecast was computed using a statistical software called Tableau, which considers exponential smoothing and seasonality. The lower and upper levels were based on 95% confidence intervals. The chart below shows that the upper limit that can be achieved is 74% by 2025 if accelerated efforts are made to drive internet adoption and smartphone use in Sri Lanka.
It is true that we tend to overdo the ceremonial elements, but well-organized conferences perform a vital function in public policy making and implementation. They concentrate the attention of the relevant persons, both in terms of preparing presentations and in terms of listening. Not all of it sticks, but if well designed, enough seeps through to improve performance in the relevant sector. Next week, the Ministry of Disaster Management is organizing a large conference with national and international participation on the theme “the future we want — A safer Sri Lanka.” I am chairing a session and presenting a paper based on work we did for UN ESCAP on making ICT infrastructure disaster resilient to support more effective action in the relief and recovery phases.
This edited volume, based on LIRNEasia ‘s 2004-2006 research program brings together scholars, practitioners, former regulators and policy makers to address the problem of expanding information and communication technology (ICT) connectivity in emerging Asia.